A lot of needy people live near our church building. Some of them are homeless, living in wooded areas nearby, others have a place to live, but not much more. And there are always those who suddenly find themselves out of job, facing a crisis, or many other kinds of immediate needs. We provide a generous amount of canned and dried foods to people in need. While we can’t respond to every need, we can prevent people from going hungry. This is a ministry that’s served people for more than 40 years!
Our church pantry is designed to be temporary help. We encourage needy families to take advantage of community and government aid programs, and will help people with transportation to offices where they can apply for the kind of help that will provide longer-range assistance.
But short-term help is often important. While we do not have funds to pay for everyone’s electric or gas bills, or past due rent, some groceries can help free up what money they do have to pay these other expenses. It often isn’t enough, but that’s where helping people connect to other forms of assistance is important.
One of the most immediate benefits to providing groceries is that the money a family would have spent to buy them is often enough to buy gas for their own car, which helps them look for a job, visit other helping agencies, and more.
We do this in a way that maintains the dignity of those who seek our help. We want no one embarrassed by asking for assistance.